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Kenningtons

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Automatic Moke?
« on: November 12, 2019, 04:09:48 AM »
All:

What engine & automatic gearbox combination will fit a Moke? My wife wants one with an auto- primarily because it’s going the the island of St. Thomas in the Caribbean and it’s really steep there with lots of hill starts. I’ve done a lot of research and am told that the Mini auto won’t fit, as it interferes with the suspension. The Mini block also needs to be from an auto as a manual block is different. However, I recently discovered that the Mini Metro was available with an automatic, with a different subframe, so I’m trying to find out if that would fit? The Honda VTec was available in auto but will not fit. The Moke will be RHD, and I may upgrade to Efi if that will help.

I’ve found a 1.3 A Series from a Metro with auto box & subframe in the UK. But I don’t want to buy it until I’m sure, as I live in the USA (actually a Pommie).

Any ideas?

Thanks,

Paul.
‘79 Moke Californian
‘85 Land Rover Defender 90 V8 SW

Terry

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Re: Automatic Moke?
« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2019, 08:22:39 AM »
HI,

if you use any of the normal A Series with Auto boxes that were available from the classic style Mini they were geared for 10" wheels where as the Mokes you are looking at are running 13" wheels so in hilly terrain such as the island you will find it will probably struggle. Some people do fit them to Mokes but run smaller wheels, lower profile tyres and or the bigger 1275  engine.

There is a small difference with the sub frame that some one more familiar with the process can explain what needs to be changed but it is not impossible. The difference between the blocks is just the oil gallery needs to be drilled to fit an Auto block on a manual box.

Terry
I'm not questioning your powers of observation; I'm merely remarking upon the paradox of asking a masked man who he is.


Cujo. 1999 - 2016

alpine moke

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Re: Automatic Moke?
« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2019, 08:30:33 AM »
I have a late model Rover mini engine and 4 speed auto fitted to my 1980 Moke

used an Australian auto subframe, I am still running 13 " wheels,
 the Rover mini autos run 12' & 13 '' wheels.

great to drive, I live in north east Vic lots of hills and mountains

You never actually own a Moke.
 You merely look after it for the next generation.

bnicho

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Re: Automatic Moke?
« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2019, 10:09:25 AM »
Hi,

Kenningtons PM'd me and I replied, then found this thread.  I'll paste up what I put in the PM, as this question seems to come up fairly regularly.  :)

My Moke *was* 1275 Auto.  After many years of punishment the auto gearbox finally gave up about five years ago and I fitted a 1310cc and manual. I still have all the parts as I intend to rebuild the engine and Auto to place into a Mini Traveller.

You can use any A series Auto engine and gearbox, but do make sure it is a good one. Autos do not like neglected oil changes and once they sludge up they can be all sorts of trouble.  Ideally you want to drive it and check all the gears are shifting smoothly.  At least check the oil and if it smells like burnt clutch or feels gritty, walk away!  Also have a look inside the rocker cover and see if the rockers are covered in gunge.  Nice clean rockers is a good sign that the engine and box have been serviced regularly. If you can get one, definitely choose the 1275.  The aerodynamics of a Moke are not great and the torque of a 1275 really helps at highway speeds.

Whatever Auto engine you choose (998/1098/1275) you will need a Mini Auto front subframe and Mini Auto engine mounts, which are available new from Minispares and the like. The Metro or Austin America front subframes do not fit a Mini or Moke.  I guess you could alter a Manual one to fit, but it would be a lot of work.  The Auto gearbox is 20mm wider across the engine mounts and is also wider from the diff housing to the front.

The Mini Auto subframe is not easy to find unfortunately.  The early solid mounted Auto subframes (from a Mk1,2,3 Auto Mini) bolt into a Moke.  The later rubber mounted Auto subframes will require some attention to the mounts, at least a few holes drilled in the floor for the rear mounts.  But it should not be too difficult.

With those hurdles overcome, it's really just a bolt in.  You can remove the clutch pedal from the pedal box and replace it with a spacer.  Depending how and where you want to mount the shifter, you may need to shorten the shifter cable.  The brake line on the torque converter side runs very close to the engine mount on an Auto where it goes into the banjo bolt at the top of the flexy hose.  I trimmed the mount a bit to give some clearance, you might come up with a more elegant solution.

You probably should rewire the starter feed so that the starter will only crank in neutral (or Park if your gearbox has park).  That's just an easy wiring mod. On Autos without park the switch is on the shifter. On late Autos with Park the switch is on the front of the gearbox.

Finally, if you have a 13 inch wheeled Aussie Moke, you might want to reduce the rolling diameter of the tyres, otherwise your gearing will be too tall and the Moke will be slow to accelerate.  The drop gears and final drive on an Auto works out about 3.76:1 so I used 185/60R13 tyres to get the gearing right.  If you have a 10inch or 12 inch wheeled Moke, then no problem.  Manual final drives and drop gears do not fit the Auto boxes, they are completely different parts.  So the only way to alter the gearing is with tyre sizes.

Hope this helps and good luck!

Cheers,
Brett.
Brett Nicholson (bnicho)
1971 Morris Moke - Mopoke
1965 BMC Mini Diesel Tractor
1965 Morris Mini Traveller - Trixie
1966 Austin Mini Super Deluxe - Audrey
1973 Land Rover S3 88 inch - Gilbert
2007 Land Rover Freelander 2
2013 Toyota Prado

Kenningtons

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Re: Automatic Moke?
« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2019, 11:16:32 AM »
Wow, thanks guys- I really appreciate the help. So I’m back to square one, trying to find a 1275 engine/auto combo, with subframe from a Classic Mini. Was that a 3-speed or 4-speed? Can they be rebuilt/strengthened? I’ll probably start my search in the UK, I see whole automatic cars for sale there but will have to do some searching for just the front bits. I’ll keep you posted.
‘79 Moke Californian
‘85 Land Rover Defender 90 V8 SW

bnicho

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Re: Automatic Moke?
« Reply #5 on: November 12, 2019, 11:50:41 AM »
Wow, thanks guys- I really appreciate the help. So I’m back to square one, trying to find a 1275 engine/auto combo, with subframe from a Classic Mini. Was that a 3-speed or 4-speed? Can they be rebuilt/strengthened? I’ll probably start my search in the UK, I see whole automatic cars for sale there but will have to do some searching for just the front bits. I’ll keep you posted.

All A series Autos were 4 speed.  :) 

You may want to consider a 1991-1997 "half cut" from Japan.   I know a few enterprising Americans are bringing in cars from Japan now, especially Skylines.  Not sure about half cuts. The half cuts usually come with EFI system, walnut dash and A/C which you don't need.  But it's easy enough to convert the EFI engine back to carb.   From about 1998 (might be 1999) they don't have a distributor hole, which means you are stuck with EFI.  But you could still just use the whole loom and have an EFI Moke.  I'm sure someone in the US will want the A/C bits and dash too. 

Example of a half-cut.  This guy was going from 998 auto to 1275 manual, but the idea is the same.   Auto half-cuts are generally cheaper than manuals too.

http://www.dutchysmini.com/the-halfcut-mini.html

Cheers,
Brett Nicholson (bnicho)
1971 Morris Moke - Mopoke
1965 BMC Mini Diesel Tractor
1965 Morris Mini Traveller - Trixie
1966 Austin Mini Super Deluxe - Audrey
1973 Land Rover S3 88 inch - Gilbert
2007 Land Rover Freelander 2
2013 Toyota Prado

alpine moke

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Re: Automatic Moke?
« Reply #6 on: November 12, 2019, 05:36:32 PM »
Well said Brett.
You never actually own a Moke.
 You merely look after it for the next generation.